As we’re still early into this shiny new year, we'd like to continue pondering fresh starts, emerging opportunities and what being a landlord may look like in 2018.
All in all, the future of landlords - particularly in The Potteries - looks bright. And often, the more adaptable you are as a landlord, the more doors you stand to open.
That said, could making your property pet-friendly open up new avenues (or indeed your investment to a new, loyal demographic) as a landlord?
Consider this: According to a recent study, UK-based animal lovers were expected to lavish a whopping £750m on their pets over last Christmas. What's more, 76% of UK pet owners even said they give their pets a Christmas dinner every year.
But, despite this nationwide love for our furry friends, it seems that pet ownership has dwindled somewhat in recent years. In fact, at present, fewer households now own a pet, with just over half (56%) of those in the UK now owning one - down from 63% back in 2012.
Now, what's interesting is that among the host of reasons this drop in pet ownership might be, one key explanation is that more people are now renting rather than owning their own homes - and they are struggling to find places to live that will accommodate animals.
Speaking recently on the subject, Steve Bennett, CEO of DogFriendly, said:
“One of the most common questions that we receive from dog owners is: where they find private landlords that will allow dogs? I know from personal experience that having a dog, or as in my case dogs, the choice of properties available to my family was severely restricted.
Accommodation suppliers who welcome dogs tell us that dog owners generally take more care of their rooms and their properties than non-dog owners - so it really is time for landlords to recognise that one in three households own a dog, which is a massive potential market too many landlords are still ignoring”.
So, will becoming a pet-friendly landlord open you up to a new, responsible stream of potential tenants that are likely to want a longer, more stable let? Quite possibly.
Spotting this gap in the market, build to rent company, Be, is aiming to accommodate those with close animal compadres by providing pet-friendly tenancies at its new be:here Hayes development down in West London.
If you already have a quality property (or properties) with ample space, advertising it as a pet-friendly home could increase your chances of sourcing top-notch tenants. Of course, there’s absolutely no obligation to be a pet-friendly landlord if you’re entirely uncomfortable with it, but if you’re open to the idea, by setting appropriate ground rules, you could well be onto something barkingly brilliant.
And of course, if you do decide to go pet-friendly and need a North Staffordshire property manager you can count on, drop us a line, we’re all ears.
While you're mulling things over, take a look at the first in our series of Rockett's Local Roundup to discover some of the weird and wonderful things that have been going on in the area.